If Connor Kennedy’s rapid rise up the ranks at Corby Town had gone unnoticed by anyone, then that would have all changed after last weekend.
The full-back burst onto the scene at Steel Park when he, in his own words, came in to “help out” after a cut in the budget forced then joint-managers Tommy Wright and Andrew Wilson to finish the Southern League Premier Division season with a youthful squad.
Kennedy capped his impressive start to life as a semi-professional footballer in fine style last Saturday.
The 17-year-old ran fully 80 yards from his own penalty area to the edge of Dunstable Town’s and then curled home a sublime first-time shot into the far corner to earn his team a fully deserved point against another of the high-fliers in the Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division.
The brilliant moment was met with joyous scenes on the terraces and not just because of the importance of the goal.
Kennedy is a Corby boy and, for any football fan, there’s nothing better than seeing one of your own come to the fore.
It was the goal the man, or boy, himself, had been waiting for.
“It was a good moment, I have been waiting a while for that,” the quietly-spoken teenager said.
“The ball just came back to me on the edge of the box and I thought I would hit it first time. As soon as it left my foot I knew it was going in.
“The manager (Wright) does pull me back a lot because we can’t leave things open all the time but this time I went forward, Cleveland (Taylor) sat in for me and I put it in the back of the net.
“It’s good we didn’t drop three points against them.
“If we had lost then we would have been facing a mountain to climb to stay in touch.
“We had the better chances but we didn’t put them away.”
Boss Wright revealed after the clash with Dunstable that a number of teams, including Leicester City, have been keeping tabs on Kennedy.
But the player himself insisted he was unaware of any such interest and is just focused on performing well as the Steelmen look to maintain their fine start.
Corby sit in fourth place ahead of this weekend’s trip to Burnham and Kennedy added: “We have had a couple of hiccups but it’s been alright and we have to keep it going.
“I am pleased with how things have gone.I haven’t heard anything about any links with other clubs. I just want to play, help the team out, do my best every week and see what happens.
“We just want to keep our run and good form going. Hopefully there won’t be anymore hiccups and we can get a good run together and try to stay around the top five.”